An anxious man pushes away his phone to avoid a follow-up call from a doctor's appointment.

Experiencing Anxiety Before Doctor's Appointments

Prior to 2009, I was a healthy young man who had never suffered with anxiety or worried about going to my hospital appointments. Even when I was first diagnosed with CKD in 2009, I was never anxious or worried about attending my appointments as it was a new experience to me and I never fully knew what to expect.

A constant state of worry

However, as the years have gone on, there is always a constant sense of worry and anxiety for me when I now go to my appointments. This has started to happen because on several occasions, I have received a phone call informing me about one of my blood levels being high, whether that is my potassium, creatinine, or my white/red blood cells, and I needed to go to the hospital urgently.

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There have also been a few occasions where I have received a call late in the night from the hospital at around 10pm or 11pm which is really frustrating when your woken up from your sleep. I would then have to call my mum to inform her as I would need to be driven to my hospital which is approximately 40 minutes away from where I live. Once there, I would immediately be put onto a drip due to potential dehydration. This would unfortunately be a reoccurring thing for me because from 2018-2022 I was in and out of hospital often. Every time I went to have my bloods taken, I knew that I would be getting a call that evening to say there they have found something concerning with my results.

My anxiety getting worse

For four consecutive years, I was unable to enjoy life properly because my anxiety was really bad and it started to impact my everyday life in general, as I didn’t want to go anywhere or see anyone because I was scared of picking up infections from being around my own family and friends as well as the general public. Something that has helped relieved my anxiety (to a degree) is I can now check my blood results after my appointments because I have an app on my phone. I can see all of the blood tests I had taken that day, and thankfully over the last two years I have not been called back to the hospital for any reason. This has resulted in me not feeling as anxious when I go to my appointments now because things surrounding my health have been improving and if I am doing all I can to ensure I continue on the path that I am on to make sure I do not go back into hospital because being admitted is one of the worst things imaginable.

I would advise anyone who is suffering with anxiety to try and speak with family or friends, or even try to do something which you enjoy to try and take your mind off whatever is worrying you. Personally, for me, I try to watch a series on Netflix, watch football or speak to other people who are also dealing with an anxiety to get some advice or some tips that I may be able to use.

This or That

In addition to chronic kidney disease, do you also live with diabetes?

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